SOURCE: Wall Street Journal
Museum Celebrates Sweet Smell of... Failure
The Museum of Failure is a global traveling exhibition that celebrates the signal marketplace flops of capitalism, from the infamous Edsel and New Coke to the obscure, highlighting the vagaries of consumer taste and historical contingency.
SOURCE: New York Times
Can Colonial Williamsburg Do Living History Better?
Historian Karin Wulf argues that the leadership of Colonial Williamsburg has steered an effective course through the conflicting imperatives of nostalgia, heroic storytelling, and the harsh inequalities of the colonial era.
Why is University of Minnesota Slow to Meet Obligations to Repatriate Native Artifacts?
Many institutions have been able to avoid repatriating artifacts because of the stringency of requirements that individual tribes document an affiliation with the objects in question, as well as a lack of transparency about holdings.
SOURCE: The Baffler
The Victims of Communism Museum is a Propaganda Machine for Normalizing the Hard Right
by Billie Anania
The museum, which counts numerous Nazi sympathizers among its founders, peddles a spurious notion of "double genocide" that lets fascists off the hook by promoting the number of 100 million victims of communism. How do they get that tally? Including every German soldier killed on the eastern front and every victim of COVID-19.
SOURCE: The New Yorker
Exhibiting the Black Panthers' Ephemera
An exhibition of the radical group's posters illustrates the importance-and difficulty-of documenting political movements that used visual communications through ephemeral media like postering and newspapers.
Light and Obliquity: Edward Hopper at the Whitney Museum
by Sam Ben-Meir
The Whitney's retrospective shows works by the painter that depart from the aesthetics of film noir and focus on the alienation and impersonalization of city life.
Major Museums are Failing Obligation to Return Human Remains to Tribes
Why has the 1990 Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act failed to ensure the return of human remains, funerary artifacts, and other items to tribal authorities?
SOURCE: The New Republic
The Cultural Workers Go On Strike
A "black turtleneck uprising" of museum workers and adjunct professors tells us that brain work has become gig work, challenging cherished myths about education, opportunity and meritocracy.
Will the Philadelphia Museum Strike Change an Industry?
Will the success of the Philadelphia Museum of Art workers' strike help push more museums toward paying livable wages to their workers?
SOURCE: Seattle Times
New York Museums to Disclose Provenance of Pieces Looted by Nazis
The Metropolitan Museum has currently identified 53 works as seized or sold under duress by Nazis. It is unclear how many more it will identify in response to a new state law requiring the display of those pieces to disclose the conditions of acquisition.
Stephen Aron's Work Examines Moments of Intercultural Peace in the West
by James Thornton Harris
Both triumphalist and revisionist histories of America's westward expansion emphasize violence, and disagree about whether to understand it with pride or guilt. But what can we make of the moments where understanding and accommodation temporarily prevailed?
Alexandria, VA Freedom House Museum Reopens, Making Key Site of Slave Trade a Center for Black History
The building, once the headquarters of the Franklin and Armfield firm, once the largest domestic slave traders in the United States, now houses a reopened museum showing the DC area as a key site of Black history before and after emancipation.
How We Told the Ongoing Story of Title IX
by Laura Mogulescu
A curator and her team chose to center the work of activists who pushed to determine the scope and meaning of Title IX's prohibition on sex discrimination in education throughout the law's 50-year history. Their exhibit is now open at the New-York Historical Society.
SOURCE: Harvard Gazette
Harvard Peabody Museum Returns Sacred Scrolls to White Earth Tribe
Professor Philip Deloria praised the repatriation of the artifacts as a "rebalancing" of accounts between the tribe and the university.
SOURCE: The Grio
Smithsonian Announces Plans to Return Looted, Unethically Sourced Artifacts
Smithsonian Institution Secretary Lonnie Bunch III announced the museum's intention to be a world leading institution on repatriating artifacts and promoting reconciliation for colonialism through museums.
SOURCE: Vanity Fair
Previewing Tulsa's New Bob Dylan Center
by Douglas Brinkley
"The center—a high-tech vessel holding the man’s oeuvre and an overview of the man—will be the spiritual home of Dylan, a relentless performer who is forever on the road."
SOURCE: Mother Jones
Are Museums Ready to Reckon with Ill-Gotten Human Remains?
The acquisition of many skeletal specimens by museums was entangled with the harvesting of tissues from the bodies of the socially marginalized.
SOURCE: New York Historical Society
"Title IX: Activism On and Off the Field" Coming to NYHS in May
The exhibition features images, objects, and documents drawn from New-York Historical’s Women’s Sports Foundation and Billie Jean King’s archives.
SOURCE: Washington Post
Smithsonian to Return All Benin Bronzes
The Smithsonian will return works that it has legal title to own but that are linked to an infamous British raid on Benin City in 1897.
The Power and Urgency of Public History
by David M. Chamberlain
After a tour of the South's historical sites, I maintain a teacher’s optimism that knowledge of our nation’s imperfect past offers us the necessary wisdom to walk ourselves back from the edge of the political ledge on which we are so perilously perched.
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